Ky asks Supreme Court to deny abortion clinic’s request to re-litigate decision upholding state’s ultrasound law

By Kentucky Right to Life

Editor’s note. On November 5, pro-abortion Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear defeated incumbent pro-life Gov. Matt Bevin.

In the going-on-nearly-three-years legal challenge to Kentucky’s Ultrasound Law (HB2) of 2017, a new document was filed in late October. Due to the General Election focus, we initially missed this announcement by Gov. Bevin.

Plaintiffs did not accept the victory for the Ultrasound Law that [a three-judge panel of] the Sixth Circuit Appeals Court handed down last April, and asked the Court for an “en banc” review of the decision. The Court declined, so Plaintiffs asked the United States Supreme Court to issue a Writ of Certiorari. That would force the entire “bench” of the Sixth Circuit to review the decision.

The attorneys in Bevin’s Administration and the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services are defending the law, since AG Beshear refused to. They filed an opposing brief in late October, asking that the petition for the Writ be denied. Their brief delineates the issue:

The “Question Presented” that is viewed as requiring “better judgment” is: Whether the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment prohibits the Commonwealth of Kentucky from regulating the practice of medicine by requiring a medical professional, prior to performing a medical procedure, to provide the patient with information that is truthful, non-misleading, and relevant to the procedure.

Kentucky’s 33-page brief explains why there is no Circuit conflict over the question and no recurring question it needs to resolve, and that the Appeals Court ruling is correct.

They point out that the petitioners (EMW Women’s Surgical Center in Louisville ) argue that HB2 is not an informed-consent law. They say a disclosure requirement cannot be considered valid unless it is consistent with the informed-consent preferences of special interest groups like the National Abortion Federation and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

The link to the brief is in the bulletin from Gov. Bevin.

Our pro-life attorney team has done a superb job of summing up for SCOTUS what is going on in the case. But, with the General Election results, will this wonderful team be in place to address any new challenges? If not, we want to again commend them for their dedicated work to save lives. If AG-elect Daniel Cameron is called on to complete their work, we wish him Godspeed.

Cameron has appointed Steve Pitt, Gov. Bevin’s General Counsel, as his counsel and special advisor. Attorney Pitt served as chief litigator for Kentucky’s Defense against the legal suits challenging our pro-life laws.